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Full text of "TheCompleteMemoirsOfGeorgeSherston"

be an almost stimulating experience. Though banished
to the backs of our minds, those automatic utterances
can still be recalled; but who can restore Clitherland
Gamp and its counterparts all over the country?
Most of them were constructed on waste land; and
to waste land they have relapsed. I cannot imagine
any ex-soldier revisiting Clitherland in pensive pil-
grimage. Apart from its deadening associations, it
was in an unattractive neighbourhood. The district
was industrial. Half a mile away were the chimneys
of Bryant's Match Factory. - Considerably closer was
a hissing and throbbing inferno, which incessantly
concocted the form of high explosive known as T.N.T.;
when the wind was in the east the Camp got the
benefit of the fumes, which caused everyone to cough.
Adjoining the Camp, on the other side, was a large
Roman Catholic cemetery. Frequent funeral pro-
cessions cheered up the troops. The surrounding
country, with its stunted dwelling-houses, dingy trees,
disconsolate canal, and flat root-fields, was corres-
pondingly unlikeable.

Unrolling my valise in a comfortless hut on that
first afternoon, I was completely cut off from any-
thing I had done before. Not a soul in the Camp
had ever set eyes on me until to-day* And I was
totally ignorant of all that I had to learn before I was
fit to go to the Front. Fixing up my folding bed, in
which I managed to pinch my finger, I listened to
what this new world had to tell me. A bugle call
was blownórather out of tuneóbut what event it
signalized I couldn't say. An officer's servant was
whistling cheerfully, probably to a pair of brown
shoes. A door banged and his army boots thumped
hastily along the passage. Then a sedate tread passed
along on the boards, evidently some senior officer,

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